Friendship Gardens at Martyrs’ Shrine

TAY (10 June 2018) – In a new community partnership beautifying the national shrine, the towns of Midland and Penetanguishene, townships of Tay and Tiny, and Waypoint Centre for Mental Health, have planted five permanent Friendship Gardens at Martyrs’ Shrine.

Rev. Michael Knox, SJ, DPhil (Oxon), Director of Martyrs’ Shrine; His Worship Scott Warnock, Mayor of Tay; Mrs. Anita Dubeau, Deputy Mayor of Penetanguishene; Mr. Steffen Walma, Deputy Mayor of Tiny; His Worship Gord McKay, Mayor of Midland; and Mrs. Carol Lambie, CEO of Waypoint Centre for Mental Health attended the 10:30 am Mass to bless the gardens and share in a moment of celebration for this new initiative.

His Worship Mayor Scott Warnock: “To see the work that has gone on at the shrine has been truly magnificent. We work collaboratively for the needs of our community and these gardens are a reflection of that work.”

Mrs. Anita Dubeau: “It’s wonderful that we are part of a community garden, how fitting that the shrine is at the centre of that initiative joining our communities together.”

Mr. Steffen Walma: “Thank you to Martyrs’ Shrine for bringing us together and our volunteers who have planted and maintained these gardens. These gardens represent the partnerships that exist within our community, and our collaboration in service to our residents.”

His Worship Mayor Gord McKay: “All gardeners know that gardening is an act of faith. You sow the seeds, and you care for them in hope that it will germinate into something beautiful. These gardens are beautiful and represent community spirit that we hope will inspire those who enjoy its beauty.”

Mrs. Carol Lambie: “A waypoint is a navigational reference point and we believe that we are walking on the journey alongside our clients. As a catholic hospital, it is through partnerships that we can realise our mission. These gardens will inspire us with hope and with love to continue on our journeys together and it is an honour to be a part of it.”

Rev. Michael Knox, SJ, DPhil (Oxon) “It is humbling to see our partners come together on this day when we bless these Friendship Gardens. The flowers in these beds have been sown and cared for much like how, together, Martyrs’ Shrine, and its partners, are bound together in their efforts to care for the beauty found in the Heart of Georgian Bay.”

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Martyrs’ Shrine is the National Shrine to the Canadian Martyrs, celebrating its 91nd season, and is a ministry of the Jesuits in English Canada. This ‘house of prayer, home of peace’ honours the Jesuit missionaries and their companions who lived, worked, and died here over 350 years ago. It is located in Midland, Ontario, in the heart of the Huron Confederacy of the 17th century. More than 100,000 visitors from around the world and from all cultural backgrounds are welcomed to the Shrine’s 75-acre landscaped grounds each year.


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